Mrs. Felicity Heston
On searching the web for a local tea house I came across this site and a local establishment. I tried to make reservations for the last 2 weekends to find they were totally booked out so took a Friday instead. Reading the reviews here I wasn’t quite sure what to expect so went with skepticism. This we all found; the building is a small house, my guests and I were greeted at the door with “Hello, happy holidays and welcome to the High Tea Cottage”, charming. Our table had my name on it, we were seated, asked if we would like iced lemon water and napkins placed in our laps. The table was beautifully set with matching china, fresh flowers and crystal glasses for water. So far so good! Then the server came back with wonderful iced lemon water and asked if we had been before. We all answered no and she suggested we choose teas. There were over 60 to look at with many names I didn’t recognize, I’m an Earl Grey girl for the past 55 years. The server suggested we not have what we have at home, as we can have that, at home, then 1 by 1 we were brought teas to smell and hear a little of the history, this was wonderful, we must have been offered over 20 teas by the time we each selected, each one having something different. The teas came in their own little pots with covers and extremely hot. The server told us everything is made to order then went on to explain the menu, make suggestions and offer to substitute our dietary needs, we gave our selections and she left. She returned shortly later to ask how we were enjoying the teas and topped up our cups. When the food arrived we were again presently surprised, lovely, beautiful presentation, fresh flowers on every plate, again our teas were re poured and pots taken away for refilling and returned piping hot. When we finished our little sandwiches, the server took away all the plates, brushed up the crumbs on the table with a small pan and brush and placed clean plates with small silver knives for scones A cart arrived with 3 preserves and lemon curd and we had a choice of 2 each served in a quaint 3 part dish with thick cream. The cart was beautifully presented again with fresh flowers and the scones much to everyone delight were hot and delicious. Again the server refilled our cups with the exception of mine that had gone cold from talking and she offered to empty it so I could have fresh hot tea. After our scones, the table was cleared of all dirty plates, and again clean plates were placed with little forks for desserts, they call them “sweet morsels”. The desserts came, yes beautifully presented, again with fresh flowers and again our teas were re heated and poured. I looked at all the other tables with guests and they were receiving the same service. I asked the server do they always replace the china, pour the teas and reheat the tea and she said 'yes'. Over all our experience was excellent, the service was professional and friendly, the server was knowledgeable of the teas, accommodating on the menu and attentive. When we were ready to leave we thanked her for a delightful afternoon and asked her name, “Jenn”, this was the owner. She has a delightful, very cultured accent which I and my guests found to be very engaging; some may take it as aloofness however we did not. My comment is to ignore the rudeness and bitterness of the negative reviews, on re reading them tonight after visiting the High Tea Cottage, I am sure there would be another side to their review. Highly recommended by 6 rather demanding older ladies!